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Prostate Cancer Paradigm Progresses, But Unanswered Questions Remain

Brandon Scalea
Published: Wednesday, Oct 03, 2018

Randy F. Sweis, MD

Randy F. Sweis, MD

Large phase III studies, such as the CHAARTED and STAMPEDE trials, have helped to significantly improved outcomes for men with prostate cancer, but unanswered questions remain, including what role immunotherapy could play in the treatment paradigm, said Randy F. Sweis, MD.

 State of the Science Summit™, Sweis discussed recent progress and next steps in the prostate cancer paradigm.

OncLive: How has the treatment landscape of prostate cancer evolved in recent years?

Sweis: Prostate cancer is an interesting disease because numerous therapies have been FDA approved over the last few years. One of the areas in which it is most quickly evolving is the sequencing and timing of therapies. This has been an area of somewhat confusion, but we have also been able to make a significant impact on outcomes. Patients can live longer and have more time being in control of their cancer.

We are seeing this in large international studies such as CHAARTED or the STAMPEDE trial. That is where the most change is occurring. There are some efforts investigating things like immunotherapy in prostate cancer. That's been a challenging area, but there are a lot of people working on it and it has some potential in this field. We've seen a couple responders with immunotherapy; we just need a better understanding of the biology. This is an area where we can see some breakthrough in the next 5 years.

Are there any indications as to a patient population who might best respond to immunotherapy?

We don't know quite yet, especially in prostate cancer. How to select patients for this type of treatment is tricky, and it's something we definitely need more data for. We will hopefully see that in the next few years. It's an area of ongoing investigation.
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